The study, which came out of Angela Ruskin University, involved 18,000 women across 40 countries. Just 29 per cent of all participants reported being ‘happy’ with the size of their set, while 48 per cent wanted bigger boobs and 23 per cent would prefer them to be smaller. The women in the latter groups were also more likely to be dissatisfied with their weight and overall appearance. The researchers connected this to poorer psychological wellbeing, including lower levels of self-esteem and happiness.
“Our findings are important because they indicate that the majority of women worldwide may be dissatisfied with the size of their breasts,” says lead researcher Professor Viren Swami.
“This is a serious public health concern because it has significant implications for the physical and psychological wellbeing of women.”
Breast cancer is currently the leading cause of cancer-related deaths among females, with survival rates directly linked to breast awareness.
“Breast size dissatisfaction may result in avoidance behaviours that reduce breast awareness, particularly if a woman’s breasts trigger feelings of anxiety, shame, or embarrassment,’ explained Professor Swami. “Another key finding is that breast size dissatisfaction decreases with age,” adds Prof Swami. “It is possible that older women experience less pressure to attain breast size ideals or that motherhood and breastfeeding encourages women to focus on the functional purposes of breasts rather than seeing them purely in aesthetic terms.”
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